September 11, 2023

Young, Colleagues Investigate Organ Donation System for Potential Self-Dealing and Financial Conflicts of Interest

WASHINGTON –  U.S. Senators Todd Young (R-Ind.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), and Ben Cardin (D-Md.) are continuing their years-long push for accountability in the U.S. organ procurement and transplant system. Last week, the senators led letters to crack down on potential financial conflicts of interest and abuse of taxpayer money by several organ procurement organization (OPO) executives and current and former board members of the Association of Organ Procurement Organization (AOPO). 

The senators asked eight OPO executives about instances in which they potentially abused their positions for monetary gain. The letters to each executive are linked below.  

The senators also wrote the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) after a recent audit report found that OPOs misspent taxpayer dollars by using Medicare to reimburse inappropriate expenditures. The senators are urging CMS to implement reforms to address glaring problems with the current reimbursement system for organ procurement.

The full text of the letter to CMS is here.

Senators Young, Wyden, Grassley, and Cardin have worked extensively to improve the U.S. organ donation system, joining forces in 2020 to launch a Finance Committee investigation into the system’s failures. Their oversight efforts notched a major victory earlier this summer when Congress passed their legislation to reform management of the organ system and improve patients’ access to lifesaving organ donations. The bill now awaits the president’s signature.